Tuesday Photo Challenge – Contact

Making contact…

Welcome to Week 136 of the Tuesday Photo Challenge!

As I was caught repeating a theme last week (great attention to detail!), I made doubly sure that this week’s theme was not used for a previous TPC. Also, I want to thank Na’ama for contributing the theme of Contact.  When I saw this theme in her list, I was at once intrigued, as Contact can be taken in multiple directions.  First contact with aliens might be far-fetched, but making contact can range from a fender bender to a phone call…

I hope that you will let your creative huices flow for this week’s theme and have some fun with it! There were some great whimsical entries last week and I certainly look forward to your flights of whimsy!

Here’s an interpretation to get you going…

Contact!

In the dogsport of agility, there are certain obstacles, such as this see-saw that require the dog to touch a certain area before dismounting.  This area of the obstacle is called the contact area.  As you can see in this photo, there are very fast dogs that get to the end of the see-saw and then have to ride it down.

The full rules of this challenge are in TPC Guidelines, but here’s the tl;dr:

  • Write a post with an image for this week’s topic
  • Please tag your post with fpj-photo-challenge (if you’re not sure about how tags work, please check out this WordPress article about tagging posts)
  • Create a pingback link to this post, so that I can create a post showing all of the submissions over the week (note: pingbacks may not appear immediately, as my site is set up to require approval for linking to it; helps against previous bad experiences with spamming)
  • Have fun creating something new (or sharing something old)!!

Looking forward to the contacts that you create  this week!

Tuesday Photo Challenge – Round Up 135

Memories fill our hearts!

Welcome to the 135th round up of the Tuesday Photo Challenge!

First of all, thanks to each and everyone of you for your warm wishes and thoughts.  Your contributions to this week’s theme of Memories are stunning and creative.  There were a number among them that really touched me, some made me smile and even laugh. It was a joy to read all of your posts and I appreciate the amount of effort that you have put into each post!

I hope that you enjoy these wonderful posts!

Our dogs are always in our hearts…

Tonka was our first dog, a lovely mutt, who we got from the shelter when she was about 10 weeks old; she was not the bravest soul, but could always tell good people from bad and stood her ground when she felt the need. Darwin was our first Cardigan Welsh Corgi; we got him when he was six months old and a timid little dog.  He grew into a proud and confident dog who loved agility and herding and lived to the age of 16.  Ransom was our second Cardigan, who loved nothing better than snuggling.  We lost him earlier this year when he was almost 15.  Bette came from the same breeder as Ransom and was a smart dog, who ruled the pack for many years.

The following were this week’s participants in the challenge with links to their posts:

  1. In the Nut House, Kammie shares wonderful memories of places and family!
  2. This week, pensivity101 takes her inspiration from Cats, as well as family, one of which led to the purchase of a piano!
  3. In another great post in theonlyD800inthehameau, the deadhead correctly observes that this theme is a repeat; go check out his great photo and I hope that the repeat was acceptable 🙂
  4. Ladyleemanila shares the wonderful memories of her Pearl wedding anniversary and the great places she visited on the trip that came with it!
  5. In this week’s contribution in Don’t Hold Your Breath, we go to the Garden of Peace and Comfort, a stunning locale!
  6. Xenia share the memories of seals in her blog Tranature, which are wonderfully cute!  In a lovely post in WhippetWisdom, Xenia shares the magic of Eivor and Pearl with great tankas.
  7. Tatiana shares a great post in Vegas Great Attractions, as she introduces us to the Nevada State Museum. In TravelWays we visit the wonderful beaches of Acapulco!  And in TravelArtPix the Panama City skyline is featured!
  8. The post in Na’ama Yehuda is filled with the power of the heart’s memories!
  9. Sarah’s post in By Sarah takes us to the Australian War Memorial in Canberra, which features the roll of honour.
  10. In a wonderful post in For the Love Of, memories of past dogs are shared with us and they are truly touching!
  11. Jase features Lucy in his post in Proscenium; Lucy is a not so sweet cat ‘rescued’ by the kids…
  12. Emily displays a pattern in her post in Zombie Flamingoes, and I think that she needs to share some of this pattern!
  13. Sandy shares a great memory in her post in Out of my Write Mind, as that class photo is fantastic!
  14. In Heart to Heart‘s post we get to experience the joys of a trip to Bangkok in 2013.
  15. In this week’s post in To See a World in a Grain of Sand… Ann-Christine shares a wonderful memory with a magical beast!
  16. The wonderful post by Geriatri’X’ Fotogallery makes me want to taste those freshly picked mangos!
  17. In his post in the Blog of Hammad Rais, Hammad not only has some great photos, but also a wonderful poem that walks down memory lane!
  18. In another wonderful post in Land of Images, we enjoy the memory of a balmy day in the dunes.
  19. Woolly shares some really cool memories in his Woolly Muses post, which is filled with the best of Botswana.
  20. Deb’s post in Twenty Four takes us to a gorgeous location in New Zealand on the occasion of her birthday in 2012.
  21. In a lovely post in Mama Cormier, we get to meet both the oldest and youngest member of her family.  
  22. Olga has great memories in her post in Stuff and what if…, and the Ukrainian Garlic festival looks very cool!
  23. Khürt may not have been feeling his best for Thanksgiving, but as we can see in his post in Island in the Net, thanks to a great support system he got to enjoy it!
  24. This week’s post in One letter UP – diary 2.0 features a rather whimsical memory and is highly enjoyable!
  25. In another fantastic post in Life Amazing, we are treated to some amazing family photos and their importance.
  26. Maria’s memories in her post in KameraPromenader gave me a chill…it may have been a little cold!
  27. The post in Ostendnomadography is filled with fantastic travel memories; those locales are just amazing!!
  28. Ilka’s post in A Thousand Miles brings back the memory of the restorative power of the forest by the Lech.
  29. Ron starts the contributions of the week with a great post in Progressing into Solitude.
  30. Debbie has a great post in Travel with Intent, where she features the St. Pancras Station soldiers’ sculptures, which are an eerie reminder of the toll of war…

I hope that you enjoy these posts and let the authors know!

Tuesday Photo Challenge – Memories

Ransom holds our heart

Welcome to Week 102 of the Tuesday Photo Challenge.  First of all my apologies for not having last week’s round up posted yet, but I think you may understand why it will be coming out this Wednesday.

As I was getting ready to leave Israel this past Friday, I received a call from my wife at a very late hour for her.  Our nearly 15 year old Cardigan Welsh Corgi, Ransom, had started seizing uncontrollably, and she had taken him to the nearby veterinary teaching hospital, where their efforts to help him were to no avail.  Our snuggly, loving Boo was no longer.  Therefore, I am dedicating this week’s theme to Ransom: Memories.

Your challenge is to share some of your favorite memories in photo(s); they can be any memory that you may have, as long as it has special meaning to you.  I very much look forward to seeing what you’d like to share!

Here is Ransom during some of his agility days…

Ransom-8x10-Collage
Visions Steal a Million

Ransom was never more interested in anything than snuggling and spreading the love that he wanted to share with everyone.  He was never the brightest of our corgis, but he was certainly the most loving one!  He leaves a hole in our lives.

The full rules of this challenge are in TPC Guidelines, but here’s the tl;dr:

  • Write a post with an image for this week’s topic
  • Please tag your post with fpj-photo-challenge (if you’re not sure about how tags work, please check out this WordPress article about tagging posts)
  • Create a pingback link to this post, so that I can create a post showing all of the submissions over the week (note: pingbacks may not appear immediately, as my site is set up to require approval for linking to it; helps against previous bad experiences with spamming)
  • Have fun creating something new (or sharing something old)!!

Sorry for this theme in a minor key this week; I hope you understand.

Bette’s 12th Birthday

Hip, hip, hoera!!

When you start counting your dogs as family, there are many things that you enjoy with them; compared to humans, dogs are pretty straightforward with their emotions and will usually be happy to see you and greet you with a wagging tail.  If that tail is not wagging, you know that something is wrong…

We have a canine family that is comprised of four Cardigan Welsh Corgis ranging in age from 3 to 15.  They are a lot of fun, and they have it pretty good with us, as they will even get massages and chiropractic treatments.  My wife trains our dogs to compete in agility, herding, obedience, barnhunt and rally.  As long as they enjoy it, they get to compete.

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Birthday Girl!

Our birthday girl is retired from competition and living the good life.  Her name is Bette (Visions ‘The Marked Woman’), as she has Bette Davis eyes 🙂  The blue eye is a mismark in this coloration of the Cardigan, which is one of the reasons that we got her; we’re not big fans of breed shows, as for us it’s all about the dog having fun.

 

Cocker Spaniel Rescue of New England

Wonderful people and dogs!

Later this morning, I will be going over to photograph one of my favorite charity auctions: the CSRNE Joey Fund Auction, aka Cockerpalooza.  The Cocker Spaniel Rescue of New England does a wonderful job rescuing dogs in need and taking care of their often considerable veterinary bills to get them back to good health.

The stories of many of the dogs that are rescued are heartwrenching, and one cannot help but be moved by them.  I have been doing various photography work for them for a number of years and always enjoy the warmth and good heart of the people involved.  Here are a couple of the cocker spaniels that I have photographed for CSRNE in the past:

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Bruschi

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Molly

Some very serious faces on these lovely dogs!

If you are lucky enough to have a dog, give them a hug, knowing that they have it good with you!!

Dogstar Thursday – vol 21

Cute with floppy ears!

This week’s dog is a well-known breed that we see everywhere.  They are cute, loyal and loving: the Cocker Spaniel.  Cocker Spaniels are dogs belonging to two breeds of the spaniel dog type: the American Cocker Spaniel and the English Cocker Spaniel, both of which are commonly called simply Cocker Spaniel in their countries of origin. In the early 20th century, Cocker Spaniels also included small hunting Spaniels.

Cocker Spaniels were originally bred as hunting dogs in the United Kingdom, with the term cocker deriving from their use to hunt the Eurasian woodcock. When the breed was brought to the United States, it was bred to a different standard, which enabled it to specialize in hunting the American woodcock. Further physical changes were bred into the cocker in the United States during the early part of the 20th century.

Spaniels were first mentioned in the 14th century by Gaston III of Foix-Béarn in his work the Livre de Chasse. The “cocking” or “cocker spaniel” was a type of field or land spaniel in the 19th century. Prior to 1901, Cocker Spaniels were only separated from Field Spaniels and Springer Spaniels by weight. Two dogs are considered to be the foundation sires of both modern breeds, the English variety are descended from Ch. Obo, while the American breed descends from Obo’s son, Ch. Obo II. In the United States, the English Cocker was recognized as separate from the native breed in 1946; in the UK, the American type was recognized as a separate breed in 1970. In addition, there is a second strain of English Cocker Spaniel, a working strain which is not bred to a standard but to working ability. Both breeds share similar coat colors and health issues with a few exceptions.

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Ears Flying!

Description

There are two modern breeds of cocker spaniel, the English Cocker Spaniel and the American Cocker Spaniel. They were bred as gun dogs; to use their sense of smell to cover low areas near the handler in order to flush birds into the air to be shot, and to use their eyes and nose to locate the bird once downed, and then to retrieve the bird with a soft mouth. The major differences between the English and American varieties is that the American is smaller with a shorter back, a domed head and a shorter muzzle, while the English variety is taller with a narrower head and chest.

Cocker spaniel coats come in a variety of colors including black, liver, red and golden in solids. There are also black and tan, and sometimes liver and tan, as well as a variety of color mixtures of those solid colors including roans, roan and tans, tricolors and those solid colors with additional white markings.

Rare colours can appear unexpectedly in certain lines, for instance while an all-white cocker is usually bred by selective breeding of very light golden strains, they can still appear very uncommonly to parents who are dark colored. A noted occurrence of this happened in 1943, when a grandson of My Own Brucie, Best in Show at the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show in 1940 and 1941, was born all-white.

In its native United States, the American Cocker Spaniel was ranked the 23rd most popular breed according to registration statistics of the AKC in 2009, a decrease in popularity since 1999 when it was ranked 13th. For twenty five years the American Cocker Spaniel was the most popular dog in America. It was ranked number one first in 1936 prior to the English Cocker Spaniel being recognized as a separate breed, and held onto the spot until 1952 when Beagles became the most popular dog. It regained the spot in 1983 and held on at number one until 1990. In the UK, the American Cocker Spaniel is far less popular than its English cousin with 322 registrations compared to the English Cocker’s 22,211 in 2009.

History

While their origins are unknown, “spaynels” are mentioned in 14th century writings. It is commonly assumed that they originated in Spain, and Edward of Norwich, 2nd Duke of York in his 15th century work The Master of Game introduces them as “Another kind of hound there is that be called hounds for the hawk and spaniels, for their kind cometh from Spain, notwithstanding that there are many in other countries.” The Master of Game was mostly an English translation of an earlier 14th century Old French work by Gaston III of Foix-Béarn entitled Livre de Chasse.

In 1801, Sydenham Edwards wrote in Cynographia Britannica that the “Land Spaniel” is divided into two types: the hawking, springing/springer and the cocking/cocker spaniel. The term cocker came from the dog’s use in hunting woodcocks. During the 19th century a “cocker spaniel” was a type of small Field Spaniel; at the time, this term referred to a number of different spaniel hunting breeds, including the Norfolk Spaniel, Sussex Spaniel, and Clumber Spaniel. While there were no Sussex Cockers or Clumber Cockers, there were dogs known as Welsh Cockers and Devonshire Cockers. The Welsh or Devonshire were considered cockers until 1903 when they were recognized by The Kennel Club as the Welsh Springer Spaniel.

Prior to the 1870s, the only requirement for a dog to be classed as a Cocker Spaniel was that it needed to weigh less than 25 pounds (11 kg), although breeders separated the cocker from the King Charles Spaniel which remains a smaller breed of spaniel. This maximum weight limit remained on the Cocker Spaniel until 1900, with larger dogs being classed as Springer Spaniels. The colors of the Devonshire and Welsh Cockers were described by John Henry Walsh under the pseudonym Stonehenge in his book The Dog in Health and Disease as being a deeper shade of liver than that of the Sussex Spaniel. Following the formation of The Kennel Club in the UK in 1873, efforts were made by breeders to record the pedigrees of cockers and springers. In 1892, English Cocker Spaniels and English Springer Spaniels were recognized as separate breeds by The Kennel Club.

There are two dogs which are thought to be the foundation sires of both modern breeds of cocker spaniels. Ch. Obo is considered by breed enthusiasts to be the father of the modern English Cocker Spaniel, while his son, Ch. Obo II, is considered to be the progenitor of the American Cocker Spaniel. Obo was born in 1879, at which point registration as a cocker was still only by size and not by ancestry. He was the son of a Sussex Spaniel and a Field Spaniel. Although Obo was an English dog, Obo II was born on American shores – his mother was shipped to the United States while pregnant. During his lifetime, it was claimed in advertisements that Obo II was the sire or grandsire of nearly every prize winning cocker in America.

Technical Details

This image was captured with a Canon EOS 1D Mk III using an EF 70-200mm f/2.8L lens and EF 1.4x extender.  Exposure settings were at 1/500 second, f/6.3 and 320 ISO.

Dogstar Thursday – vol 20

Speedy, agile and smart!

The featured dog this week is one of the ultimate performance breeds, as they are excellent at a variety of tasks ranging from herding to obedience and agility, which comes as no surprise, as the breed focuses on intelligence and obedience.  The Border Collie is a working and herding dog breed developed in the Anglo-Scottish border region for herding livestock, especially sheep.

Description

In general, Border Collies are medium-sized dogs with a moderate amount of coat, which is often thick and frequently sheds. They have a double coat which varies from smooth to rough, (and occasionally curled). Whilst black and white is most commonly seen colour pattern of the Border Collie, the breed appears in just about any colour and pattern known to occur in dogs. Some of these include black tricolour (black/tan/white), liver and white, and red tricolour (red/tan/white) have also been seen regularly, with other colours such as blue, lilac, red merle, blue merle, brindle, and Australian red (also known as ee red, blonde, recessive red, or gold) which is seen less frequently. Some Border Collies may also have single-colour coats.

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Focus and control!

Eye colour varies from brown to blue, and occasionally eyes of differing color occur; this is usually seen with merles. The ears of the Border Collie are also variable — some have fully erect ears, some fully dropped ears, and others semi-erect ears (similar to those of the rough Collie or sighthounds). Although working Border Collie handlers sometimes have superstitions about the appearance of their dogs (handlers may avoid mostly white dogs due to the unfounded idea that sheep will not respect a white or almost all white dog), in general a dog’s appearance is considered by the American Border Collie Association to be irrelevant. It is considered much more useful to identify a working Border Collie by its attitude and ability than by its looks.

Dogs bred for showing are more homogeneous in appearance than working Border Collies, since to win in conformation showing they must conform closely to breed club standards that are specific on many points of the structure, coat, and colour. Kennel clubs specify, for example, that the Border Collie must have a “keen and intelligent” expression, and that the preferred eye colour is dark brown. In deference to the dog’s working origin, scars and broken teeth received in the line of duty are not to be counted against a Border Collie in the show ring. The males’ height from withers comes from 48 to 56 centimetres (19 to 22 in), females from 46 to 53 centimetres (18 to 21 in).

History

The Border Collie is descended from landrace collies, a type found widely in the British Isles. The name for the breed came from its probable place of origin along the Anglo-Scottish border.  Mention of the “Collie” or “Colley” type first appeared toward the end of the 19th century, although the word “collie” is older than this and has its origin in the Scots language. It is also thought that the word ‘collie’ comes from the old Celtic word for useful. Many of the best Border Collies today can be traced back to a dog known as Old Hemp.

In 1915, James Reid, Secretary of the International Sheep Dog Society (ISDS) in the United Kingdom first used the term “Border Collie” to distinguish those dogs registered by the ISDS from the Kennel Club’s Collie (or Scotch Collie, including the Rough Collie and Smooth Collie) which originally came from the same working stock but had developed a different, standardised appearance following introduction to the show ring in 1860 and mixture with different types breeds.

Old Hemp

Old Hemp, a tricolor dog, was born in Northumberland in September 1893 and died in May 1901. He was bred by Adam Telfer from Roy, a black and tan dog, and Meg, a black-coated, strong-eyed dog. Hemp was a quiet, powerful dog to which sheep responded easily. Many shepherds used him for stud and Hemp’s working style became the Border Collie style. All pure Border Collies alive today can trace an ancestral line back to Old Hemp.

Wiston Cap

Wiston Cap (b. 28 Sep. 1963) is the dog that the International Sheep Dog Society (ISDS) badge portrays in the characteristic Border Collie herding pose. He was a popular stud dog in the history of the breed, and his bloodline can be seen in most bloodlines of the modern day Collie. Bred by W. S. Hetherington and trained and handled by John Richardson, Cap was a biddable and good-natured dog. His bloodlines all trace back to the early registered dogs of the stud book, and to J. M. Wilson’s Cap, whose name occurs sixteen times within seven generations in his pedigree. Wiston Cap sired three Supreme Champions and is grand-sire of three others, one of whom was E. W. Edwards’ Bill, who won the championship twice.

Introduction to New Zealand and Australia

Collies were listed as imports to New Zealand as early as 1858, but the type was not specified.  In the late 1890s James Lilico (1861?–1945) of Christchurch, New Zealand, imported a number of working dogs from the United Kingdom. These included Hindhope Jed, a black, tan and white  born in Hindhope, Scotland in 1895, as well as Maudie, Moss of Ancrum, Ness and Old Bob.

It is unclear whether Hindhope Jed was a descendant of Old Hemp. Born two years after him, she is mentioned in a British Hunts and Huntsmen article concerning a Mr John Elliot of Jedburgh:

Mr Elliot himself is well known for his breed of Collies. His father supplied Noble to the late Queen Victoria and it was from our subject that the McLeod got Hindhope Jed, now the champion of New Zealand and Australia.

At the time of her departure to New Zealand, Hindhope Jed was already in pup to Captain, another of the then new “Border” strain. Hindhope Jed had won three trials in her native Scotland, and was considered to be the “best to cross the equator”.

In 1901 the King and Mcleod stud, created by Charles Beechworth King (b. 1855, Murrumbidgee, NSW), his brother and Alec McLeod at Canonbar, near Nyngan (north-west of Sydney), brought Hindhope Jed to Australia, where she enjoyed considerable success at sheep dog trials.

Technical Details

This image was captured with a Canon EOS 1D Mk III using an EF 70-200mm f/2.8L lens and EF 1.4x extender.  Exposure settings were at 1/640 second, f/6.3 and 200 ISO.